At the 111th session of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS-EU) the Minister of Planning and Economic Development Dr. Francis Kaikai expressed ” deep appreciation for the progress on the negotiations for a new OACPS-EU Partnership Agreement”
Noting “with satisfaction the efforts at all levels aimed at ensuring a more meaningful cooperation with mutual and complementary interests”.
The delegation was led by the Minister of Planning and Economic Development Dr. Francis Kaikai which comprised of Mr Solomon Jamiru, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Corporation and Ambassador Samuel Tamba Musa, accredited to the EU.
At the meeting which was held virtually on the 14, 15 and 17 December, Minister Kaikai reiterated that they have been following with keen interest the state of play of the “post-Cotonou negotiations and the report of the Committee of Ambassadors and that of the report by the Ministerial Central Negotiating Group(CNG).
“We note that the Negotiators of the OACPS and the EU have signed off on the text of a broad 20-year partnership deal to succeed the Cotonou Agreement”.
Speaking about the new treaty, which is expected to enter into force in December 2021, the Minister of Planning and Economic development stated that they should take the opportunity to reflect during this period on one of the critical decisions they have taken which is the closure of national and regional authorising offices, ” given the changes in the structure of the agreement, a common foundation to all countries, which sets out shared values and priorities, along with three regional protocols for Africa, the Caribbean, and Pacific”.
Adding there is need for clarity in the months ahead on the governance and implementation structures that will replace the National and Regional authorizing offices as they will cease to exist in the new agreement.
“We note that the ratification process will proceed throughout 2021. This will obviously give space to make some adjustments to the text before they are finally initialed”.
Sierra Leone, the Minister went on, attaches great importance to the governance and implementation structures for thematic areas, ranging from sustainable development and growth, to human rights and peace and security in the new deal geared towards empowering each region. To this end, Sierra Leone proposes that the governance and implementation structures be featured in the final reflections before the new deal is approved, signed and ratified by all parties.
H.E Georges Rebelo Pinto did not attend the meeting because he has been affected by Covid-19.
The Assistant Secretary General( ASP) H.E. Prof. Palamagamba John spoke about Intra ACP Sustainable Widlife Management (SWM) Programme white Paper and policy brief titled “build back better in a post COVID-19 world- Reducing future wildlife-borne spill-over of disease to humans”.
The Programme highlights the importance of effective implementation of integrated public health solutions, such as the “One Health Approach”.
The ASP disclosed that an addendum to the Programme Financing Agreement for a €1 million top-up was signed, in August 2020 and this will allow the Climate Support Facility (CSF) to continue implementing its demand-driven technical assistance to countries and regions up until May 2022.
The Programme goal he said, is to contribute to fostering sustainable development, through the prevention of desertification, preservation of ecological biodiversity, sustainable use of water management in Members of the OACPS, by improving the decision-making process through informed adaptation options to climate variability and change.
The overall objective is to strengthen the climate service value chain through building the capacities of decision-makers at all levels to make effective use of climate information and services.
At the end of the meeting, the Council approved eight decisions and two resolutions on key issues affecting its Member States (MS) and pertaining to the administrative and financial management of the Organisation during the 111th session of the OACPS Council of Ministers.
The Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) is a group of countries in Africa the Caribbean and the Pacific that was created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. Formerly known as African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP), the organisation’s main objectives are sustainable development and poverty reduction within its member states, as well as their greater integration into the world’s economy.